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Queen Elizabeth approves British Parliament suspension

Queen Elizabeth approves British Parliament suspension

London: Britain's Queen Elizabeth has approved Prime Minister Boris Johnson's plan to suspend parliament, a statement from the official body of advisers to the Queen, known as the Privy Council, said on Wednesday.

The statement confirmed that parliament would be suspended on a day between Sept. 9 and Sept. 12, until Oct. 14.

"It is this day ordered by Her Majesty in Council that the Parliament be prorogued on a day no earlier than Monday the 9th day of September and no later than Thursday the 12th day of September 2019 to Monday the 14th day of October 2019," the statement said.

Earlier, Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday sought a suspension of Parliament until October 14 to present what he described as a new bold and ambitious legislative agenda, just two weeks before the Brexit deadline.

Downing Street said Johnson had already spoken to Queen Elizabeth II to request an end to the current parliamentary session in its second sitting week next month, starting September 9.

"Following the conclusion of the traditional party conference season, the second session of this Parliament will commence with a Queen's Speech on Monday October 14, Downing Street said.

Johnson briefed his Cabinet of the plan at a meeting earlier, highlighting the number one legislative priority as Brexit. If a new deal is forthcoming at the European Council in mid-October, he will then introduce a Withdrawal Agreement Bill and move at pace to secure its passage before October 31.

I believe it is vital that Parliament is sitting both before and after European Council and if, as I hope, a deal with the EU is forthcoming, Parliament will then have the opportunity to pass the Withdrawal Agreement Bill required for ratification ahead of October 31, Johnson said in a statement.

We must focus on crucial public priorities helping the NHS [National Health Service], fighting violent crime, investing in infrastructure and science and cutting the cost of living. We have made an important start funding for 20,000 extra police officers and new investment in our NHS but to deliver on the public's priorities we require a new session and a Queen's Speech, he added.

Downing Street further elaborated that the decision to end the current parliamentary session, which is "the longest in close to 400 years and in recent months one of the least active", will enable Johnson to put a fresh domestic programme in front of MPs for debate and scrutiny while also ensuring that there is good time before and after the European Council, scheduled for October 17 and 18 for Parliament to further consider Brexit issues. Crucial voting on legislation is likely to fall on October 21 and 22.

Reacting to the Prime Minister's move to suspend Parliament, UK House of Commons Speaker John Bercow said it "represents a constitutional outrage."

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